Friday, January 27th at 8:00am the Senate Judiciary Committee will hear a bill that intends to ban gender-affirming care, harms transgender youth and their families, and creates penalties for health care professionals. This bill goes against our Social Work Code of Ethics and will cause harm to many we work with. Help us reject SB 99 by taking a few minutes to send a message using the button below. Select the Senate Judiciary Committee "(S) (S) Judiciary" from the committees drop down list.

Send an Online Message Now!

Remember that your comments are part of the official record, so be mindful and thoughtful of what you share through written comment and/or testimony.

What Would This Bill Do?

This bill targets nonbinary and transgender youth and hinders the ability of professionals to provide gender-affirming care. It significantly limits access to care for those in need and puts social workers in conflict with their ethics. Those who choose to still provide care could be fined. You can read the entire bill as currently drafted here.

Written Comments

Emails through the online form on the state website (above) are extremely effective because committee members are given these emails on the floor. A good stack of emails about this bill will go a long way! Below is an example of a short comment you can use or modify:

"As a social worker serving Montana families, it is clear to that SB 99 will harm the clients, families and communities I work with. Private medical decisions should be made by families and their health care providers and not by government officials. This bill creates unnecessary restrictions that will harm professionals and reduce access to care for children and families."

Resources and Talking Points

Handout on gender-affirming care from Whitman-Walker Health

Talking Points From Montana Human Rights Network

Under SB 99:

  • Transgender youth would be denied crucial healthcare.
  • Health care professionals would be fined for providing the standard of care for youth. 
  • Severe penalties for physicians, therapists, and school officials who support trans youth, even those who are questioning their gender without medical intervention.
  • Youth needing hormone therapy for any reason could be denied care.
  • Legislators would be determining health care access, not physicians.
  • Studies show that when transgender youth are able to access medically appropriate medical care, suicidality drops by 70%.
  • Makes healthcare access more difficult for any family seeking medical attention for their child who is intersex or has a birth defect.
  • Destroys physicians’ ability to adhere to best practices established by years of research and approved by reputable medical associations.
  • Normalizes misinformation about transgender, nonbinary, and Two Spirit people and their healthcare needs.
  • Makes life more difficult for youth and families who already experience bullying and discrimination.

Testify or Watch the Hearing

  • If you are in Helena, this hearing is scheduled for room 303 at 8:00am Friday.
  • If you are not in Helena, you can testify online via Zoom here. You must register by 5pm Thursday, January 26th.
  • If you just want to watch, you can do that online here.

Join the Team!

Members can join the NASW Montana Social Action and Policy Committee and help us identify and take action on bills that matter to social workers! We have an active Slack Workspace where we are having great discussions. To learn more visit our Policy Page or email policy committee chair Adrienne Bombelles at [email protected].